Suffolk should get new N-plant, says MP

IF more nuclear power stations are going to be built in Britain then Suffolk is a “natural place” for one of them to be located, an MP claimed last night.

IF more nuclear power stations are going to be built in Britain then Suffolk is a “natural place” for one of them to be located, an MP claimed last night.

John Gummer, Conservative MP for Suffolk Coastal, said he would be “keen” to see a third power station built at Sizewell if ministers push ahead with their plans.

He was speaking following yesterday's government White Paper on energy efficiency, in which it was made clear Whitehall want more nuclear power stations to be built.

It is believed that locations where nuclear power stations already exist would be looked at first for any potential new development, possibly paving the way for a third plant at Sizewell - Sizewell C.


You may also want to watch:


“If we are to have new nuclear power stations I'm very keen to have one at Sizewell,” said Mr Gummer.

“It seems to me the natural place to put it. We have had nuclear power stations well run by the local people and I would be keen to see a Sizewell C because it would be carefully regulated in an open and transparent society.”

Most Read

However, Mr Gummer said he did have concerns about the Government's overall energy policy.

He said: “It seems to me the Government have not taken the measures that are necessary to make sure the choice is cost-effective.

“In the past the nuclear industry has produced very expensive energy and failed to reveal the real cost. I'm very anxious that if we are going to have nuclear power if must be cost-effective, competitive and safe.”

Yesterday's White Paper launched a five-month consultation on the “significant role” new nuclear power stations could play in cutting emissions and diversifying energy supplies.

Ministers made clear they want new nuclear power stations to be built and trade and industry secretary Alistair Darling said it was the Government's preliminary view that it was in the public interest to give private energy firms the option of investing in new nuclear building projects.

The move has sparked fears from campaigners who feel the Government should be investing more in renewable resources such as solar, tidal and wind power.

Charles Barnett, from the Shut Down Sizewell Campaign, said: “Nuclear power will not reduce CO2 emissions - although they emit very little carbon dioxide the process of mining, purifying and transporting the uranium, the manufacture of the fuel rods together with the construction of the power stations and the decommissioning will mean it will not reduce emissions.

“We really have to look at renewable sources - wave, tidal and wind - that's what we should be doing, coupled with energy efficiency and conservation. If you reduce the amount of energy used then you don't need to build new nuclear power stations.”

The White Paper could also mean that energy bosses look at building a new power station at Bradwell in Essex, to replace its decommissioned plant.

Bobby Teague, who campaigned against the plant, said: “It would be devastating to the local area. When the last one closed down in 2002 everyone breathed a sigh of relief. The area has changed so much and it is now used for recreation and its beaches - it would be totally unsuitable for another nuclear power station.”

Mr Darling said the Government would do everything it could to encourage people to save more energy and help consumers and businesses become more energy-efficient.

“Every action set in train by this White Paper is important, and none will be easy,” he said. “Nor can we become a low carbon economy in a single step. But if each of us acts, we can start to deliver the low-carbon economy vital to our prosperity.

“With the measures we are proposing across government on energy and the wider environment, we can cut emissions by between 23-33 million tonnes of carbon by 2020 - the equivalent of removing all the emissions that we get from every car, van and lorry on Britain's roads today.”

craig.robinson@eadt.co.uk

Become a Supporter

This newspaper has been a central part of community life for many years. Our industry faces testing times, which is why we're asking for your support. Every contribution will help us continue to produce local journalism that makes a measurable difference to our community.

Become a Supporter
Comments powered by Disqus